Apr 20

Elder Independence Fund: Filling in the Gaps

wife and husband, Debbie and Robert at home supported by Elder Independence fund

Robert and Debbie were enjoying their careers, their hobby of swing dancing, and long walks together, when Robert suffered a stroke in 2012. For months, Debbie worried because she had no idea how she would take care of him when he came home from the hospital.

Debbie’s first contact with Springwell was with our Caregiver Specialist, who guided Debbie through preparation for Robert’s homecoming and immediately helped her feel less alone. Eventually, Springwell programs have come to play a huge role in their lives. Springwell coordinates and manages Robert’s significant in-home care support, provides him with home-delivered meals, and has offered Debbie respite care so that she could attend family milestone gatherings. Debbie and Robert appreciate this support, finding it invaluable as they face the daily challenges in their changed lives.

Unfortunately, there are some important needs for which there are few assistance options. Making their home accessible required investments which rapidly depleted the couple’s savings. Springwell’s Elder Independence Fund, supported entirely by donations, has saved the day twice. In 2017, Robert needed an additional wheelchair that provides better support, but it was not covered by insurance. A grant partially funded that purchase. Recently, the couple’s stove broke and they couldn’t afford to replace it. A stove isn’t covered by any assistance programs, but it is exactly the kind of need the Elder Independence Fund is designed to address. The Elder Independence Fund allows Springwell staff to provide seniors and caregivers help they need to alleviate their distress, maintain their independence and improve their quality of life.